How this Citi counter service officer transitioned into high net worth banking
Eunice Chu credits her success at work to a chat with a customer in her early days as a counter service officer.
“I served premier clients. They were willing to chat, since I was not in a sales role,” she recalls. “Once, a client told me his banker didn’t prioritise his needs.”
These comments “profoundly influenced” Chu, who within two years was promoted to Relationship manager (RM) at Citigold, where she serves high-net-worth clients.
Today, she bears this lesson in mind by putting herself in clients’ shoes and going the extra mile. She also credits her rapid career progression to her background in customer service, which allows her to build strong communication skills and be more client-centric.
Chu is one of thousands of wealth management professionals that Citi is looking to hire on the back of its global wealth ambitions. It has plans to expand its wealth management business across its wealth centres in Hong Kong, Singapore, UAE and London, grow client assets by US$150 billion by 2025, and build a pipeline of 2,300 wealth professionals to support client growth.
For Hong Kong specifically, it is looking to add over 1,000 relationship managers and private bankers by 2026.
As part of its diversity initiatives to bring fresh perspectives into the bank, Citi Hong Kong is looking to attract talent from non-finance backgrounds, including account or client service managers from membership clubs, luxury concierge companies, hotels and airlines with strong customer service skills and can provide considered, tailored solutions to clients.
“Talent from diverse backgrounds bring fresh perspectives. Clients have different experiences, so with diverse RMs we are better able to relate to clients and offer tailored solutions,” says Wong Pak Ling, Citi Hong Kong’s district manager for consumer banking.
Fast-track training into wealth leaders
Citi offers a fast-track onboarding programme and relevant training for newly-hired wealth managers with non-banking backgrounds.
Newly-hired relationship managers would benefit from a “fruitful and practical” four-month programme that imparted new joiners with financial planning skills and comprehensive knowledge of various finance areas, including forex trading, investment, structured products and insurance protection.
As wealth managers progress in their careers, Citi also offers certification programmes – developed with partners including insurer AIA and business institution The Wharton School – to allow them to continuously upskill.
Then there are mentorship programs and group coaching sessions where RMs can obtain performance feedback from managers and share their experience in overcoming challenges encountered at work.
Beyond training, the bank helps wealth managers succeed through robust support from its professional investment advisory team. Citi’s 400 research analysts work together with RMs to provide clients with market updates and trends, data, and investment options. This allows wealth managers to deliver more advanced client advisory.
With this support, wealth managers hailing from non-finance backgrounds can enjoy the benefits of a diverse and fast-tracked career at Citi.
Citigold RMs will progress into banking and frontline management roles, including Citigold Private Client Banker, senior relationship manager, relationship management team head, branch manager, and district manager.
Alternatively, they can go on to become insurance, investment, and treasury specialists.
To recognise and assist talent in rising the ranks quickly, Citi has in place a Recognition Program, which Chu says speeds up promotions for outperforming staff and motivates her to set and accomplish goals. “I know my hard work will be rewarded,” she says. “The clear incentive scheme drives me to achieve.”
Join Citi’s upcoming Hong Kong Global Wealth Management Virtual Career Week from March 1 - 4 to learn more about our 2022 wealth opportunities. Hear from wealth managers about life at Citi, and interact with senior leaders to understand the support and rewards in place to create winning teams. Register here.
The career fair will last for 4 nights, covering below business units:
Mar 1 – 19:00-20:00 – Branch Client Service Specialist
Mar 2 – 19:00-20:00 – Citigold Relationship Manager
Mar 3 – 19:00-20:00 – Private Bank High-Net-Worth Banker & Citi Private Client Banker
Mar 4 – 19:00-20:00 – Private Bank Associate Banker